Student, San Jose State College, 1955. Student, Washington University, St. Louis, 1953—1954. Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, 1957.
Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (Marshall scholar 1957-1960, Draper's studentship 1959-1961, National Science Foundation fellow 1960-1961), Cambridge University, England, 1961. Doctor of Science (honorary), Cambridge University, England, 1997. Doctor of the University (honorary), University York.
Electronic technician/junior engineer, Ampex Corporation, Redwood City, California, 1949-1953; engineer, Ampex Corporation, 1955-1957; senior engineer, Ampex Corporation, 1957; Doctor of Philosophy research student in physics, Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge U., 1957-1961; research in long wavelength x-rays, Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge U., 1957-1963; fellow, Pembroke College, 1961-1963; consultant, United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, 1962-1963; United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization adviser, Central Science Instruments Organisation, Chandigarh, Punjab, India, 1963-1965; owner, chairman, Chief Executive Officer, Dolby laboratories Inc., San Francisco and Wootton Bassett, United Kingdom, since 1965.
Member Marshall Scholarship selection committee, 1979—1985. Trustee University High School, San Francisco, 1978—1984. Board directors San Francisco Opera.
Board governors San Francisco Symphony. Fellow: Institute Broadcast Sound, Society Motion Picture and television Engineers (Samuel L. Warner award 1979, Alexander M. Poniatoff Gold medal 1982, Progress award 1983), British Kinematograph, Sound and television Society (Outstanding Technology and Science award 1995), Audio Engineering Society (board governors 1972-1974 1979-1984, Silver medal 1971, Gold medal 1992). Member: National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (Charles F. Jenkins Lifetime award 2003), Consumer Electronics Association (Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame 2000), International Broadcasting Convention (John Tucker award 2000), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (Ibuka award 1997, Edison medal 2010), Pacific Union Club, St. Francis Yacht Club, Tau Beta Pi.
Married Dagmar Baumert, August 19, 1966. 1 child Thomas Eric;1 child David Earl.